Ron DeSantis blames Joe Biden for affordable housing crisis
Image via AP

Rent is skyrocketing across the state.

Gov. Ron DeSantis blamed President Joe Biden on Friday for the rising cost of rent in Florida.

The political finger-pointing comes after Florida Democrats sent a letter to DeSantis Thursday, urging him to declare a state of emergency to address a growing lack of affordable housing in Florida.

Rent prices, the letter notes, are on the rise.

“This situation is no longer sustainable as Floridians simply cannot afford Florida,” the letter reads.

DeSantis, however, swatted down calls for an emergency declaration soon after receiving the letter Thursday. The issue, he suggested, lies with Biden.

“We should take that letter, and we should forward it to Joe Biden in the White House, because things are more expensive because of his policies,” DeSantis told reporters in Ocala.

Rent is skyrocketing beyond reach of some Floridians. According to various reports, rent in Central Florida is up 20% since January while rent in South Florida is up nearly 25%.

The Tampa Bay region has seen a nearly 25% increase since July — among the largest increases in the nation, according to the letter. Only 2% of Tampa apartments, the letter adds, cost below $1,000 monthly.

“We are calling on Governor DeSantis to declare a state of emergency in order to crack down on landlords who are taking advantage of the pandemic to engage in price gouging and to ensure we are putting the freedom of our working families to have an affordable place to live first,” Democratic Sen. Gary Farmer wrote in the letter.

Speaking in Ocala, DeSantis pointed to other problems plaguing the Biden administration, including supply chain snarls and heightened fuel prices.

He also lamented the CDC’s eviction moratorium, an order that prohibited landlords from booting COVID-19-impacted tenants amid the pandemic. The moratorium ended July 31.

“We’re happy to forward that letter onto Biden, because make no mistake about it, that is what is driving increased costs across the board,” DeSantis added.

In the letter, Democrats note a state of emergency would allow Attorney General Ashley Moody to enact price gouging protections. Proponents, including Democratic Rep. Carlos Guillermo Smith, want to ban rent increases of 10% in the last twelve months. The accuse the Republican Governor of waging a “culture war” while rent prices increase.

“The simple fact is that more and more Floridians can’t afford Florida and it’s past time we recognize that access to affordable housing is an emergency that must be addressed,” Smith wrote.

Jason Delgado

Jason Delgado covers news out of the Florida State Capitol. After a go with the U.S. Army, the Orlando-native attended the University of Central Florida and earned a degree in American Policy and National Security. His past bylines include WMFE-NPR and POLITICO Florida. He'd love to hear from you. You can reach Jason by email ([email protected]) or on Twitter at @byJasonDelgado.


  • PeterH

    December 17, 2021 at 2:26 pm

    Florida’s affordable housing crisis is preventing America’s seasonal privileged directionless northern snowbird hospitality workforce from coming to Florida this winter. It’s less expensive to continue camping in mom and dad’s basement.

    DeSantis will forever blame Biden for his own incompetence!…. And Floridians will suffer through it.

    • Karen C

      December 17, 2021 at 7:01 pm

      I agree with the Governor. Annual snowbird migration has been replaced by residents of New York, New Jersey, California, Michigan, Illinois, and Kentucky fleeing their states and becoming full time residents of Florida. As demand for houses increased prices increased. Floridians are being out bid by these Northern transplants. The same thing happened in 2004-2008 until the housing market crashed. At which time, transplants vacated their Florida residences leaving them to foreclosure balancing the housing market.

  • Kathy

    December 17, 2021 at 2:40 pm

    What a jackass. He has told business owners what they can and can’t do. He has put people at risk with his private vaccination parties. He wants an army that only answers to him. No one should be able to tell a homeowner what they can charge for rent, it is happening throughout the Country. There is affordable housing which needs major overhauls. Do those repairs during the summer months, there are hoteliers who, for tax breaks or other incentives could house the tenants during renovations. Build affordable housing, build tiny house communities as so many other states have! That, right there is the biggest problem. Developers build “affordable housing” with only a percentage of the units truly affordable. He throws tantrums whenever things don’t go his way. Get rid of these people in charge of doling out the rent assistance that is still sitting in the coffers. Hire the right people, not cronies, to manage those properties through the State. Do something, he has had plenty of time to address this problem. It was a problem long before the pandemic.

    • Tom

      December 18, 2021 at 9:28 pm

      You ate deeply mistaken.
      23 states have their own state guard.
      He had kept businesses open, which allowed Florida’s economy to prosper.
      4.5% unemployment rate. 13 consecutive months of growth.
      Governor has budgeted additional $100,000 million to housing trust fund. Legislature may add more.
      Feel free to place your jack behind in a tiny house.
      You are irresponsible and full
      of cheap shots.
      America’s Governor the best!

  • Alex

    December 17, 2021 at 2:48 pm

    Poor DeDumbass.

    He isn’t coherent.

    In other news:

    Florida Man gets longest sentence yet in the 1/6 republican terrorist attack on Democracy.

    Robert Scott Palmer got more than 5 years.

    • PeterH

      December 17, 2021 at 2:53 pm

      Florida leads the way with criminal coup leaders. Nothing to be proud about. LOCK HIM UP, TAKE AWAY ALL FUTURE GUN RIGHTS, PUT HIM ON A NO FLY LIST FOR LIFE!

    • Impeach Biden

      December 17, 2021 at 9:35 pm

      Isn’t coherent. Funny statement coming from someone that supports incoherent and clueless Biden.

  • Figure it out

    December 17, 2021 at 2:53 pm

    Rents have been rising for the last 5 years, and people are just now noticing because late raisers are trying to catch up to a market that’s 25% ahead of them and the few carpet baggers taking advantage to make news.

    Florida’s been out of whack with wages and rents forever because of all of the “out of state” money pushing up housing prices and thus rental prices.

    Along with people moving from “Freedomless states” like California and New York driving those prices higher and lack of building for a few decades created a supply and demand shortfall.

    This is finger pointing plain and simple for political fodder. If the Governor wants to blame someone, blame the rain because there’s enough to go around to everyone on why the rents are higher.

    I love it when something complex gets boiled down to one or two simple levers so fingers can be pointed.

    Quit giving lip service to affordable housing and change the regulations so people can build smaller homes on smaller lots or allow them to do it without as much regulation or impact fees.

  • tom palmer

    December 17, 2021 at 4:48 pm

    Gov. DeSantis blames everyone else for everything. Nothing to see here.

  • Tom

    December 18, 2021 at 3:49 pm

    Biden/Harris the worst presidency since Carter.
    Really embarrassing. Charlemagne the God interviewing Harris, she has a conniption fit in the interview. He asks whose President.
    Clown show continues.
    America’s Governor awaits his chance.
    Govs mansion to WH, DC.

  • Tom

    December 18, 2021 at 3:58 pm

    America’s Governor proposed added more for housing, up to $355 million. Legislature may up it further.

    America’s Governor the Whiz kid. Brightest elected official, Gov in country. Purchasing new monoclonal Covid therapeutic.

    Florida Great economy continues growth, 13 months in job growth. 51,000 new in November.
    4.5% unemployment In state.
    America’s Gov solves all.

    • Concern Citizen

      December 21, 2021 at 10:31 am

      The Florida’s 4.5% unemployment is almost as good as the USA 4.2%.

      • Tom

        December 23, 2021 at 4:42 am

        No non concerned and illegal citizen, it’s actually better.
        13 straight months of consecutive growth. The 4.5%, 51,000 jobs is significant net growth in overall jobs for one state.

  • Charlotte Greenbarg

    December 18, 2021 at 6:34 pm

    Love to see the Democrat parrots frantic in their attempts to bash Gov. DeSantis! Keep it up, it’s just what we need. LOL

  • Tom

    December 18, 2021 at 9:50 pm

    Yes Charlotte.
    Manchurian parrots, LMAO.
    They are scurrilous.
    Clown show in D.C.
    Dem clown show for Gov.
    With a corrupt Dem Ag commissioner.
    Earning personal profit.
    You can’t make this stuff up,

  • David

    December 21, 2021 at 12:50 am

    Wait a minute – Good things happening in Florida and DeSantis loves to take the credit. Then when something bad or challenging is happening blame Biden. So Governor, that is not how its done – you are the leader in your state and you need to own the good, the bad and the ugly. Stop deflecting for your own political gain and get to work on some sound affordable housing policy in your state.

  • Concern Citizen

    December 21, 2021 at 8:52 am

    DeSantis brags how huge numbers of people are moving to Florida because they will have more FREEDOM and how we have a great economy that will benefit them. Issues that he takes credit for.

    So if you have more people looking for housing, it only stand that rents will increase. It is a simple principal of capitalism and supply and demand. The more the demand for an item, cost will increase.
    So perhaps, we should hold the so called, America’s Governor for the blame of these housing increases.

    • Tom

      December 21, 2021 at 12:35 pm

      You foolish Manchurians, you know not what you speak of David & non concerned citizen.

      Governor just budgeted $355 million to housing assistance, affordability.

      America’s Governor, the best ever.

      • Concern Citizen

        December 21, 2021 at 1:09 pm

        Question. In the past, money that was funded for affordable housing assistance would go into other priorities (not related to housing) thus the funding for affordable housing was significantly reduced. What guarantees are there to prevent this from happing again?

        • Tom

          December 22, 2021 at 5:33 am

          Non illegal citizen, it’s called legislative law, once approved by the legislature and signed into law. Legislature can always reauthorize or rescind.Go watch school house rock!

          • Concern Citizen

            December 22, 2021 at 9:11 am

            So DeSantis can rescind the $355 million.
            Thank you for your thoughtful response, Tom. May you find the Lord during this Christmas season.

  • Tom

    December 22, 2021 at 10:44 pm

    You fool, how dare you try to use the political season or issue for the lord.

    No you fool, he cannot rescind an approved appropriation of the legislature. He can only veto” and they can override.

    He’s recommended the $355 million. The legislature ultimately decides. He can sign or veto what they pass. Watch school house rock. Geez.

Comments are closed.


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